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The Tall Ships Are Coming! ®

Visit Pensacola, in partnership with Tall Ships America®, is excited to present Tall Ships® Pensacola. This is the first time in history Tall Ships America® will bring its TALL SHIPS CHALLENGE® Series of Tall Ships® races and port festivals to the Gulf of Mexico. Pensacola is one of only three host ports, and the only Florida port, included in the Tall Ships® Gulf Coast series.

Tall Ships® Pensacola will take place in Plaza de Luna in Downtown Pensacola April 12-15, 2018. The grand event will occupy three-complete festival days, which will include onboard tours, sail away ventures, VIP viewing parties and events, private ship receptions, entertainment, food, and vending booths. 

Tall Ships


Festival & Entertainment Schedule

*Schedule subject to change, please check back for updates

ATTENTION: Due to the impending weather the Tall Ships® Pensacola Festival will be closing (Saturday) at 6 p.m. Our gates will open at 10 a.m. tomorrow morning as planned for a day full of festival activities.

Tall Ships Pensacola is a rain or shine event. All ticket sales are final, no refunds. Ticket prices are subject to change at any time without further notice. We reserve the right to change our product's prices at any time.

Age Restrictions: Tall Ships® Pensacola is a family-friendly festival open to all ages. Child tickets are available; children five and under are free of charge.

Box Office will be open Friday and Saturday 9am-6pm, Sunday 9am-4pm. Tickets that have not already been used may be exchanged for a different day at the Box Office located at the south New World Conference center entrance on Gimble St.

Satisfy Your Tastebuds at the Tall Ships Festival with a great selection of food options from the following establishments: Joes Caribe, Boneheads, Sons of Italy, Trolley Stop Ice Cream, Johnson's BBQ, Chili Lindo and Dominos Pizza.


  • 3 p.m. Parade of Sails Kick-Off Event - Jaco's Bayfront Bar & Grille
  • 3-5 p.m. Parade of Sails 
  • 8 p.m. PYC Satori Foundation Captain’s Welcome Reception


  • 9 a.m. — 10 a.m. Educational & Special Tours 
  • 10 a.m. — 10 p.m. Tall Ships® Festival 
  • 10 a.m. — 6 p.m. Onboard Tours 
  • 11 a.m. -  5 p.m. Kids Crew Activities: Presented by Margaritaville Beach Hotel and Holiday Inn Resort Pensacola Beach
    • 11 a.m. - Noon: Pirate Hats & Mermaid Crowns
    • 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Pictures with the Mermaid
    • Noon - 1pm: Pirate Tattoos
    • 1 p.m. - 2 p.m.: Pictures with the mermaid
    • 1:30 p.m. -  3:30 p.m. Visit with Live Pirate Characters… arrrrr!
    • 3 p.m. - 4 p.m.: Pensacola ROCKS!
    • 4 p.m. - 5 p.m.: Pirate Eye Patches
  • 5 p.m. — 7 p.m. Dave McCormick at the Michelob Ultra Beer Garden
  • 7 p.m. — 9 p.m. “Perdido Brass” with members of the Pensacola Symphony on the VIP Stage
  • 7 p.m. — 9 p.m. - Salute to Sunset VIP Viewing Party -  Buy Tickets 
  • 7 p.m. — 9 p.m. PYC & Media Reception “Picton Castle” 
  • 8 p.m. — Jamall Richardson at the Michelob Ultra Beer Garden


  • 9 a.m. — 10 a.m. Educational & Special Tours 
  • 10 a.m. — 10 p.m. Tall Ships® Festival 
  • 10 a.m.— 6 p.m. Onboard Tours 
  • 11 a.m. -  5 p.m. Kids Crew Activities: Presented by Margaritaville Beach Hotel and Holiday Inn Resort Pensacola Beach
    • 11 a.m. - Noon: Pensacola ROCKS!
    • 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Pictures with the Mermaid
    • Noon - Pirate Hats & Mermaid Crowns
    • 1:30 p.m. -  3:30 p.m. Visit with Live Pirate Characters… arrrrr!
    •  3 p.m. - Pirate Tattoos
  • 3 p.m. – Scenic Heights at the VIP Stage
  • 4 p.m.- Billy Brown Band at the Michelob Ultra Beer Garden
  • 6 p.m. – Tom Mason & the Blue Buccaneers at the VIP Stage
  • 7 p.m. – John Hart Project at the Michelob Ultra Beer Garden
  • 7:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m. Ship to Shore VIP Pairing Experience - CANCELED - Due to concerning weather we will be canceling our “Ship to Shore” VIP event this evening. If you’ve purchased a ticket we will be reimbursing you. Come out and join us while the sun is shining. 


  • 9 a.m. — 10 a.m. Educational & Special Tours 
  • 10 a.m. — 7 p.m. Tall Ships® Festival 
  • 10 a.m. — 6 p.m. Onboard Tours 
  • 11 a.m. -  4 p.m. Kids Crew Activities: Presented by Margaritaville Beach Hotel and Holiday Inn Resort Pensacola Beach
    • 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Pictures with the Mermaid
    • 1:30 p.m. -  3:30 p.m. Visit with Live Pirate Characters… arrrrr!
  • 12 p.m. — Billy Brown Band at the VIP Stage
  • 1 p.m. – Tom Mason & the Blue Buccaneers at the Michelob Ultra Beer Garden
  • 3 p.m.- Yeah Probably at the Michelob Ultra Beer Garden
  • 7 p.m. Crew Party at O’Riley’s Irish Pub

Participating Ships


1917, Netherlands

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1877, United States

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2015, United States

Oliver Hazard Perry
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1928, Cook Islands

Picton Castle
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ElissaHide Details
ElissaIn 1975, a rusted iron hulk lay in the waters of Piraeus, Greece. Nearly 100 years earlier, she had sailed the world’s oceans as a proud square-rigged sailing ship. Cut down, leaking and decrepit, she waited a cable’s length from the scrap yard. Today, Elissa remains one of the hallmarks of maritime preservation. Lovingly restored and maintained, she sails again, continuing a far longer life than most ships are ever granted. She tests her readiness annually in a series of sea trials amid the oil rigs and shrimpers off Galveston Island. Working under professional officers, her volunteer crew completes an extensive dockside-training program. As funds allow, she makes longer voyages.

Hide DetailsOosterschelde
oosterscheldeOosterschelde was built in the Netherlands in 1918 at the order of the Rotterdam shipping company HAAS and is the last remaining representative of the large fleet of schooners that sailed under the Dutch flag at the beginning of the 20th century. Her name is derived from the eastern part of the Schelde river that flows from France through Belgium and the Netherlands to the sea and Oosterschelde is the largest restored Dutch sailing ship, which is a monument for Dutch shipbuilding and maritime navigation under sail.

As a freighter, Oosterschelde carried some hundred tons of cargo including bricks, herring and bananas. In 1921, the ship was sold, changing hands three times and converted to a motor-sailer before being bought in 1988 and restored to her former glory.

The Rotterdam Sailing Ship Foundation was instituted to support restoration through fund raising and began work in 1990. The ship was officially launched in 1992 by Her Royal Highness Princess Margriet.

In 2000, Oosterschelde raced from Boston to Amsterdam in the Tall Ships 2000 race.

Quick Facts

We’ve got history! Built in 1917 the Oosterschelde is celebrating her centenary this year! Join us and be there to celebrate this milestone on board the one and only historic Dutch three master.

Amongst many other ships from all corners of the world we race to Boston. The ‘Oosterschelde’ is built as a cargo vessel and is not the quickest, but despite her composition and age and with some extra effort of us, the crew, we can win.

Hide DetailsOliver Hazard Perry
Oliver Hazard PerryOliver Hazard Perry is the first ocean-going full-rigged ship to be built in the US in 110 years and is named for the young Rhode Island hero of the Battle of Lake Erie who on September 10, 1813 wrote, "We have met the enemy and they are ours..." The ship’s business is conducted from offices in Perry’s restored former home in Newport, Rhode Island. OHP is a platform for a wide range of sail training and educational programs. Schools and colleges craft their own custom programs of varying duration on the ship. Adult programs are offered directly through the ship’s office, and with partners at Ocean Navigator/Professional Mariner Magazines. The ship has been designed to serve both the able and disabled. Sail training participants aboard OHP live and work alongside the professional crew as integral members of the ship’s company, becoming part of the team that sets and trims the sails, guides her voyage and animates her spirit. Sail on the Oliver Hazard Perry.

Hide DetailsPicton Castle
Picton CastleThe 284-ton Barque Picton Castle is a traditionally rigged and operated sail training ship based in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, Canada, but best known for her voyages around the world. Over the past 15 years, the ship has made five voyages around the world, one around the Atlantic Ocean,two trips to the Great Lakes and countless other jaunts up and down the coasts of the U.S. and Canada. Along the way we’ve introduced more than 1000 people to the rewards of square-rigged sailing. In 2006, Tall Ships America (then ASTA) named us Sail Training Program of the Year. In 2011, our skipper, Capt. Daniel Moreland, was named Sail Trainer of the Year by Sail Training International. In October 2012, the Picton Castle will cast off on an all-new adventure, an 8-month exploration of the Pacific Ocean. Ports of call will include Grenada and Portobelo, Panama on the Atlantic Ocean, then after a transit of the famous Panama Canal it will be on to the Galapagos, Pitcairn Island, Mangareva, Tahiti, Bora Bora, the Cook Islands, Samoa and Tonga - to name just some of our stops! As a training ship all on board work, stand watch, and learn the ways of a square-rigged sailing ship. Workshops are conducted in wire and rope rigging, sail making, boat handling, navigation, and practical seamanship. The ship also delivers much-needed educational materials and other supplies to the remote islands she visits. She is outfitted to the highest standard with safety gear and equipment.

Hide DetailsWhen and If
When and IfWhen and If is an 83’ Alden schooner, commissioned by General George S. Patton in 1939. Her name is attributed to the quote, "When the war is over, and if I live through it, [my wife] Bea and I are going to sail her around the world.” With General Patton’s death in December of 1945, it was unlikely that When & If would ever fulfill her original purpose. But in 2012, Doug Hazlitt (known for his complete restoration of another historic Alden schooner) purchased the vessel with the mission to restore her to her former glory. With enough support and sponsorship, the Captain and crew intend to make General Patton’s dream for his sailboat come true. As Patton’s will requested, they plan to repurpose the vessel for sail training and education by taking on apprentices along their journey and donating a portion of their proceeds to a sailing scholarship program.

Hide DetailsLynx
LynxThe square topsail schooner Lynx has been designed and built to interpret the general configuration and operation of a privateer schooner or naval schooner from the War of 1812, the original Lynx being a "Letter of marque" Baltimore Clipper commissioned during the opening days of the war. Servingeffectively as a blockade-runner and offensive weapon of war, she was among the first ships to defend American freedom. Dedicated to all those who cherish the blessings of America, Lynx sails as a living history museum, providing inspiration and resolve at this time in our nation’s history. She is fitted with period ordnance and flies flags and pennants from the 1812 era. To complement her historic character, the Lynx crew members wear period uniforms and operate the ship in keeping with the maritime traditions of early 19th century America. Lynx also operates as a sail training vessel to serve as a classroom for the study of historical, environmental, and ecological issues. In addition, she undertakes "port to port passages" that lead to personal growth and awareness through the experience of life at sea aboard a traditional sailing vessel.

Participating Sail Away Ships


1939, United States

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2001, United States

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Festival Location Map


Tall ship map

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Prohibited Items

Tall Ships® Pensacola has been designated as a Marine Event of National Significance by the United States Department of Homeland Security. This designation requires certain security measures to be in place for the public’s safety.

All personal belongings, bags, and purses will be checked. Large backpacks are not permitted. Firearms, weapons of any kind, explosives, or incendiary devices are not permitted. Selfie sticks are not permitted. Open or unsealed bottles or containers of any kind of water or other liquids and food are not permitted. No outside food or drinks are allowed inside festival grounds. Baby food and formula must be stored in plastic containers. Glass is not permitted. No coolers are allowed inside festival grounds.

Reminder:  There will be no storage of bags.